June 27, 2016
Disability Policy Consortium Weekly Update


The good news from the hearing in Worcester on Friday is that more than 120 people turned out to testify against the proposed cap on overtime for Personal Care Attendants (PCAs). Hopefully we can equal that crowd this morning, so we can work with the State to establish a much more fair, equitable and sane policy.

Also, good news this week on S1323.  This is the bill which would bring the code of the Architectural Access Board (AAB) into compliance with the ADA.  As you know, we have been working on this bill for 16 long years.  Earlier this year, it passed the Senate.  We learned this week that the AAB has been given clearance to work on the bill.  We have only one month to pass the bill.  We will keep you posted so you can make those phone calls.

Enjoy the holiday next weekend, and we will be back with you on Tuesday, July 5th.

Have a good week and a s always, happy  reading.

John Winske
Disability Policy Consortium
Advocacy News: Listening Session on Restricting PCA Work Hours


When:  Monday, June 27, 2016, 11:00 A.M. - 1:00 P.M.

Where:  1 Ashburton Place, 21st Floor, Boston, MA

MassHealth has just proposed restricting overtime hours that PCAs can work. H ere are some of the basic points around this:
  • A cap on overtime usage is proposed to start September 1, with PCAs being limited to 40 hours/week work, though the state doesn't anticipate full compliance will be feasible by then.
  • An exemption policy will be established.
  • PCA overtime is costing the state in the range of $1 million/week.
  • 7,300 consumers used PCAs who work over 40 hours/week.
  • Approximately 6,000 PCAs are collecting overtime pay.
  • The budget for the PCA program is now $704 million, of which half is reimbursed by the federal government.
If you have comments or concerns on the proposed changes-and especially if you can provide detail on how it might specifically impact you-please share with us for our advocacy efforts. 

You also can submit formal comments on the proposed regulations to the Assistant Secretary for MassHealth, EOHHS, One Ashburton Place, Room 1109, Boston, Massachusetts 02108, or e-mail them to masshealthpublicnotice@state.ma.us. E-mailed comments should contain the sender's name, mailing address, and organization or affiliation, if any. 

Comments will be accepted through 5:00 p.m. on Friday, July 8, 2016. The proposed regulations (130 CMR 422.000: Personal Care Services) are available at http://www.mass.gov/eohhs/gov/laws-regs/masshealth/masshealth-proposed-regs.html.
Health Care Update:  Can It Be Done: MassHealth Bold's Effort to Improve Quality of Care and Reduce Cost  

Hi everyone,

This is a quick update on the MassHealth 1115 Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) waiver application to CMS that was released last week for 30 day response period by stakeholders; you are a stakeholder. What is contained in the final waiver application will affect the 1.8 million MassHealth beneficiaries Massachusetts, including thousands of people with disabilities that have MassHealth as their primary insurer.

For those of you who may be unaware of the waiver application, if accepted by CMS, upwards of $1.8 billion will be allocated to hospitals and other providers in Massachusetts over the next five years. More specifically, the dollars will go to create Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs). The DSRIP funding is a part of the Affordable Care Act and it makes dollars available to states to improve their healthcare delivery systems and reduce costs.

More specifics about the waiver application provider as we have more time to read it more closely. At the outset, stated that the process undertaken by MassHealth to create the waiver has been transparent and open; perhaps more than any previous administration. There were numerous work groups, stakeholder group meetings and opportunity for input by different advocacy and stakeholder groups.

The waiver draft includes language that shows, MassHealth has been listening to DAAHR and other advocates, and is moving in the right direction. The waiver language includes:
  • investing in care in the community versus institutional settings by increasing spending on community-based LTSS to prevent admissions to and transition members from institutional settings, and support independent living and community first principles;
  • improve accessibility for members with disabilities, including ensuring full compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA);
  • use the One Care model in providing person centered care and community-based LTSS;
  • demonstration of competencies and independent living philosophy and recovery models;
  • ACO governance structures will include consumer representation
  • MassHealth will promote the integration of oral health and quality of oral health care through a range of methods (e.g., inclusion of oral health metrics in the ACO quality measure slate, contractual expectations for ACOs)

In addition to the many positive points in the waiver, there are areas that are very weak on details and then there are areas of deep concern..

  • It sets out no benchmarks for improving community health or reductions of people trapped in nursing facilities.
  • MassHealth is using a "stick" to move people into ACOs. For people in the fee-for-service system, this means that beginning in October 2017 MassHealth will be limiting benefits to people in the fee-for-service system.
The bottom line, there is much work to be done to ensure the new delivery system. We will be working with our partners in DAAHR and keeping you updated on what is happening. It is also important that we hear from you.


Dennis Heaphy,  Policy Analyst

For more information please click here,
DPC News: Research Opportunity

Are You a Member of Commonwealth Care Alliance?

Are you on One Care?

Want to share about your experience?

The Disability Policy Consortium (DPC) is launching a new research program: YES Health (Your Experience: Speak up for better health care).

Yes Health is a diverse group of One Care enrollees sharing their experiences about the program. We use surveys and other opportunities for people to share their experiences about One Care. We then gather that information and share it anonymously through YES Health bulletins that go out periodically to providers

If you're eligible to join YES Health and complete a short survey you will receive $10 for your time.   Over time there will be other chances for you to participate and be reimbursed for your time.

All the information you provide is confidential.

We want to hear from you!
Call: 617-307-7374

Note: YES Health does not resolve individual health care or One Care disputes. If you are having a problem with your care under One Care, please call the One Care Ombudsman's office at 617-307-7775 or 855-781-9898.
Net News: 50 Million Americans with Disabilities Could Swing the Election 

Vox.com had a fantastic article by Liz Plank, an emerging media force in her own right.  The article focused on the electoral impact our community could have in the upcoming Presidential election.   You can read the article here
Community Opportunity: Feeling For Form opportunities at the MFA

Dear Friends and art lovers,

I want to share some upcoming opportunities at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston over the next few months. Please share with anyone you know who may be interested. All tours are free and include Museum admission.

1. Thursdays June 30th and July 7th at 6:30 pm, and Saturday July 2nd at 11:00 am, please come for a tour of our current special exhibition "Megacities Asia", a show of 11 artists from very large cities across Asia, responding to and reflecting on Urban reality. Pre-registration required, email hgoodwin@mfa.org or respond to this email. If these dates don't work for you, let me know. Catch it while you can! The exhibit closes on July 17.

2. Sunday July 10, at 1:00 pm. The monthly Sunday tour is moved from the 1st to 2nd weekend due to the holiday. Topic is "Frozen in Time", exploring portraits in sculpture from different places and different eras. Pre-registration required, email hgoodwin@mfa.org , respond to this email, or call 617-369-3189.

3. Did you know you can request a tour on your own time-frame? Give us a little notice, but we are very happy to work with your schedule and whatever part of the Museum you would like to visit.

The MFA, Boston is located on the E train of the Green Line. Get off at Museum Stop, which is right after Northeastern U. The address for The Ride is 465 Huntington Ave.

Questions? Don't hesitate to ask. Want to come to one of the above mentioned tours? Please let me know.

All best,


Hannah Goodwin
Manager of Accessibility
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
hgoodwin@mfa.org | 617-369-3189
Calendar: Judge King Hearing

When: Tuesday, June 28, 2016, 1:00 P.M. - 3:00 P.M.

Where:  10 Park Plaza. 2nd Floor, Boston, MA 

On Tuesday June 28th, Judge King will be hosting his 
semi-annual public meeting regarding the status of the
MBTA/BCIL Settlement agreement. This particular 
meeting will be unique as we will be taking some time to  mark the 10 year anniversary of the settlement and 
share some personal reflections on the past 10 years. 
And there will be refreshments!

Please join us to mark the occasion, share feedback 
and help shape future plans.  

See you there,

Laura Brelsford
Assistant General Manager, System-Wide Accessibility
Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority
Ten Park Plaza, Suite 4470
Boston, MA 02116
Phone: 617-222-1688
Fax: 617-222-4394
Email:  lbrelsford@mbta.com
Calendar: Introduction to WRAP and WHAM      
WHEN: Friday, July 8, 2016 -10:00 am - 3:00 pm, Registration starts at 9:30 am

WHERE: The Cambridge Public Library, Lecture Hall, 449 Broadway, Cambridge, MA

An Interactive Introduction to  WRAP and WHAM

Wellness Recovery Action Planning (WRAP)
Copeland Center

Whole Health Action Management (WHAM)
The Center for Integrated Health Solutions

PRESENTER: Robert Rousseau, Director of Peer Recovery Services, FHR, Inc.
Advanced Level WRAP Facilitator
Senior WHAM Trainer

WRAP and WHAM are evidence based practices developed by individuals living with mental health challenges to confront the unacceptable statistic that people living with severe and persistent mental illness die 25 years sooner than the general population.

This event is free and open to the public, but pre-registration is required.

RSVP and Request Accommodations by July 1 at www.dlc-ma.org or 617-723-8455 x 123

Please Note: Out of consideration for people with environmental illness and/or multiple chemical sensitivity, please refrain from using perfume or other scented products.

Due to extremely limited parking in Cambridge, we strongly recommend taking public transit or carpooling to this event. See calendar event at www.cambridgema.gov/ccpd for transit & parking options.

This event is sponsored by the Disability Law Center, Cambridge Commission for Persons with Disabilities, and Massachusetts Developmental Disability Council.
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